Friday, March 1, 2024

Inter win third straight Italian Super Cup title under Simone Inzaghi after beating Napoli in Saudi Arabia

SSC Napoli v FC Internazionale - Italian EA Sports FC Supercup Final
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The Italian Super Cup trophy belongs to Inter for the third consecutive season. Simone Inzaghi led his squad to their first piece of silverware of the season on Monday, defeating Napoli with a late goal scored by Lautaro Martinez in the stoppage time. 

After a difficult game that was highlighted by Napoli striker Giovanni Simeone getting sent off in the second half with a second yellow, the Nerazzurri managed to find the breakthrough late in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

This is Inter’s eighth Supercoppa title, and the third under coach Simone Inzaghi, who became the manager with the most trophies in the history of the competition, surpassing Marcello Lippi and Fabio Capello (four). This is also the third different finalist to come up short against Inter, with Juventus coming up short in 2022 and AC Milan in 2023. 

A final-four format was adopted for the first time in the history of the competition, with the winner of Serie A (Napoli) facing the Coppa Italia runners-up (Fiorentina) and Serie A’s runners-up (Lazio) facing last season’s Coppa Italia winner (Inter) in the first two semifinals. 

Inter’s win was possible thanks to the late-game heroics of Lautaro Martinez, who once again was crucial and scored the winning goal in the first minute of stoppage time in the second half. Lautaro has 123 goals for Inter in all competitions, equalling Christian Vieri (123) in ninth place among the top scorers in the history of the club. The Argentine striker had an incredible season so far, and with 21 goals in 27 games played in all competitions, becoming even more crucial as the captain of the team as he lifted his first trophy. 

Inter will now focus on the league, as the Nerazzurri are currently second in the Serie A table, one point behind Juventus. Inzaghi’s side has one game in hand as it was busy with the Supercoppa clashes over the past weekend. The Bianconeri took the advantage and won 3-0 against Lecce on Sunday. In two weeks, Inter will host Juventus at San Siro for one of the most anticipated matches of the season that could help determine the favorites for the Scudetto. 

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